Kansas may be well-known for its expansive grasslands and Midwestern charm, but in the fall, it also attracts beer lovers seeking to celebrate Oktoberfest. There are numerous festivals and events taking place throughout the state, so there are plenty of opportunities to take part in the celebrations.
In this article, we'll explore some of the best Oktoberfest events in Kansas, from traditional German celebrations to unique local ones.
Kansas City Oktoberfest
When it comes to Oktoberfest, Kansas City is the place to be. In the center of the city, there is a two-day festival called the Kansas City Oktoberfest. This festival is an enjoyable way to get into the mood of Oktoberfest because it features live music, delectable food, and, of course, lots of beer.
German beer, food, and music are all featured at the event, which takes place at Crown Center Square. There are also traditional German dancers and a number of family-friendly activities.
The city of Hays, which is located in northwest Kansas, is well-known for having a significant German background. Early in October, there is a three-day festival called Oktoberfest Hays. Along with typical German food, beer, and music, the event offers both kids' and adults' games and activities. A parade, a 5K run, and a beer garden where guests can sample some of the best beers from around the world are all included.
Crown Center Oktoberfest
Crown Center is a popular shopping and entertainment destination in Kansas City. Each year, the Crown Center hosts its own Oktoberfest celebration. The festival features live music, traditional German food, and, of course, plenty of beer. There are also carnival games, a petting zoo, and a variety of other family-friendly activities to enjoy. The festival is held in the Crown Center Square, which is transformed into a festive German village for the weekend.
Martin City Oktoberfest
The Martin City Oktoberfest is a yearly celebration that takes place in Kansas City's Martin City area. Live music, authentic German cuisine, and, of course, plenty of beer are all featured at the festival. The entire family may enjoy a carnival, a petting zoo, and a number of other activities. The early October celebration is a wonderful way to welcome in the fall.
Stafford Oktoberfest is a two-day event that takes place in early October. The event features live music, dancing, food, and drink. The event is held in the downtown area of Stafford and attracts thousands of people from around the region. The event is free to attend, and there are plenty of activities for the whole family.
The three-day Atchison Oktoberfest takes place in late September. The festival offers traditional German fare, libations, and entertainment. There are also a ton of kid-friendly activities available, such as carnival games and face painting. The Atchison Riverfront, where the event is hosted, has breathtaking views of the Missouri River. The event is free to attend.
Baxter & Associates Oktoberfest
Baxter & Associates Oktoberfest is a one-day event that takes place in early October. The event features live music, German food and drink, and a variety of activities for the whole family. The event is held at the Baxter & Associates office in Lawrence, and it is free to attend.
Fort Hays State University Homecoming/Oktoberfest
Mid-October sees the two-day Fort Hays State University Homecoming/Oktoberfest celebration. Live music, food, and drink are provided at the event, along with a number of activities for community members, alumni, and students. The annual festival, which takes place on the campus of Fort Hays State University in Hays, is a melting pot for old and young. The event is free to attend.
Held annually in the heart of downtown Lawrence, Blocktoberfest is a beloved event that draws locals and visitors alike. This free event features live music, food trucks, and of course, plenty of beer. With more than 25 local and regional breweries participating, there's something for every beer lover. The festival also features a homebrew competition, where local brewers can show off their skills and compete for prizes. In addition to beer, attendees can enjoy a variety of games and activities, including a stein-holding contest and a sausage-eating competition.
St. John's Oktoberfest
If you're looking for a more traditional Oktoberfest experience, look no further than St. John's Oktoberfest in Hanover. This annual event, held in late September, features all the classic elements of a German Oktoberfest, including polka music, bratwurst, and, of course, beer. The festival takes place on the grounds of St. John's Catholic Church and includes a beer garden, food booths, and a silent auction. For families, there are also plenty of kid-friendly activities, including face painting, pumpkin decorating, and a bounce house.
Wichita's largest Oktoberfest celebration takes place in downtown Wichita every September. This family-friendly event features live music, food vendors, and a beer garden with more than 50 beers to choose from. The festival also includes a craft fair, where local artisans showcase their handmade goods, and a kid's zone with a variety of activities. For those looking for something a little more active, there's a 5K and a 10K run that take place during the festival.
Oktoberfest in the Flinthills
For a truly unique Oktoberfest experience, head to the small town of Cottonwood Falls for Oktoberfest in the Flinthills. This festival celebrates the German heritage of the area with a variety of events, including a beer garden, German food, and live music.
The festival also features a unique beer tasting experience, where attendees can sample a variety of craft beers while taking a scenic tour of the Flint Hills. For families, there are plenty of activities to enjoy, including a pumpkin patch, face painting, and a petting zoo.
Oktoberfest at the Farm
For a more rural take on Oktoberfest, head to Louisburg for Oktoberfest at the Farm. This family-friendly event takes place on a working farm and includes a variety of activities, including a pumpkin patch, hayrides, and a corn maze. The festival also features live music, German food, and plenty of beer. For those looking for a unique experience, there's also a goat yoga class that takes place during the festival.
Whether you're looking for a traditional Oktoberfest celebration or a unique event, there are plenty of options in Kansas. From small town festivals to large-scale events, the state has something to offer for beer enthusiasts of all ages. So grab your lederhosen and head to one of these Oktoberfest events for a memorable fall experience.